The third T20I match of the five-match India Vs England T20I series is scheduled to take place on the 16th of March, 2021 at Motera Stadium of Ahmedabad. Both the teams are evenly placed at this point, with India winning the second match of the series and England winning the first match of the same. This is the second series of the England tour of India 2020-21. This series was preceded by a four-match test series which India won 3-1.
England had begun the test series with a lot of hope after winning the first match, but India staged a brave turnaround and won the remaining three matches by huge margins. Its two spinners, Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel led the attack from the front. England was thus hopeful about staging a turnaround in the T20I series but their loss in the second T20I is bound to affect their fortunes.
India and England have always shared a well-known rivalry. India had played its first international match ever against England in 1932 and since then the two teams have had a healthy cricketing rivalry. This was reflected in the test series and is now being seen in the T20I matches as well. England won the very first match after restricting India to a meagre total. Its run chase was dominated by a vital 72 run partnership that was shared by Jos Buttler and Jason Roy, two of its most pivotal players.
India thus was unable to stake its claim as one of the best T20I sides of the world in the first match. This series is particularly important because it is being seen as a dry run for the T20I World Cup that will be held in India later this year in October. Both the teams are known for being prominent T20 sides, thus intensifying the competition.
The second match saw India winning by 7 wickets. India had won the toss in the match and opted to bowl first. England scored a total of 164 with four wickets remaining, with Jason Roy leading the individual scores with a good 46. India has been a team that is known for its chasing abilities and it won the match by seven wickets with 13 balls remaining. Two players of India particularly starred in the chase – Ishan Kishan and skipper Virat Kohli. Young player Ishan Kishan opened the Indian innings and scored an impressive 56 off 32 balls with 4 sixes and 5 fours. Virat Kohli was the top-scorer of the Indian innings with 73 runs off 49 balls. This was dotted with 3 sixes and 5 fours. This marked Kohli’s return to form with all his trademark shots dotting the innings.
Players to watch out for
There has not been any concrete information available on the squad for the upcoming match yet. However, it was clear that certain choices had been made within the Indian team. KL Rahul opened the innings for India instead of Shikhar Dhawan or Rohit Sharma. Ishan Kishan shall be having a lot of attention on him after the performance in this match. Fans will be expecting a lot from Suryakumar Yadav, who is known for his hard-hitting skills. England also has an array of good players. Jason Roy has been in fine form for England. Jofra Archer is a fine bowler and has been performing well in the course of the series. Jos Buttler is also an important player for the side.
India: Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma (VC), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Hardik Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, Rahul Tewatia, Ishan Kishan (reserve keeper).
England: Eoin Morgan (captain), Joss Buttler, Jason Roy, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, Reece Topley, Chris Jordan, Mark Wood, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Sam Billings, Jonny Bairstow, Jofra Archer.
Given that these matches actually show the kind of preparation and effort the teams are willing to give for the T20I World Cup matches, both teams seem to be committed to playing well in them. To add to that is the historical rivalry between the two teams. The two teams also have a host of talented players who seem to be in good form. Overall, the possibility of watching good, entertaining cricket in these matches is quite high. That is why cricket fans are glued to their television and mobile screens now, watching the match.